Care risk 'at one in four hospitals'

Almost a quarter of NHS trusts in England have been identified as high risk and may not be offering safe care at a high level of quality to patients, the care watchdog has warned.

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Hunt: 'Labour didn't want public to know' CQC figures

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt told ITV News the Care Quality Commission's (CQC) findings on care NHS trusts in England were "the figures that Labour did not want the public to know about".

Mr Hunt said: "We are now assessing the risk in every hospital in the country to decide where we need to do these proper new Ofsted-style inspections first.

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt. Credit: ITV News

"We want to share with the public so that they know what we know.

"The most important thing for me is to make sure that when these figures come out we are doing everything we can to sort out and turn around failing hospitals".


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Leeds Teaching Hospitals Trust welcome CQC banding

Leeds Teaching Hospitals Trust has issued a statement in response to the Care Quality Commission placing them in the band for the highest risk of failing patients:

We welcome the use of more comprehensive and wide-ranging measures of quality and safety to help us to improve the standard of care we provide.

Our hospitals have significantly lower than the average mortality rates and our staff work hard to provide good quality care to our patients...

It is not a particular surprise that Leeds Teaching Hospitals was singled out in this way. The Trust is fully aware of the risks highlighted in the report.

Action plans have been put in place and there has been good progress in making improvements, but we fully accept there is more to do.

Improving quality, patient satisfaction and providing the safest possible environment for all our patients is our top priority.

– Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

CQC using 'intelligent monitoring' to inform inspections

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is using the data - called intelligent monitoring - to inform its new inspection regime of all NHS trusts by December 2015.

Following these detailed inspections, trusts will be given Ofsted-style school ratings on care of "outstanding", "good", "requires improvement" and "inadequate".

As a doctor, I liken intelligent monitoring to a screening test; our inspection combined with intelligent monitoring provides the diagnosis, following which we make a judgment, which will in turn lead to action.

Our intelligent monitoring helps to give us a good picture of risk within trusts, showing us where we need to focus our inspections.

We aim to publish the results at regular intervals. They will provide the basis for constant contact with NHS hospitals and other NHS organisations, and may lead to inspections in response to particular issues.

– Professor Sir Mike Richards, the CQC's chief inspector of hospitals


Some 'high risk' NHS trusts already in 'special measures'

Some of the NHS trusts identified by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) as being "high risk" are already in "special measures" following an investigation into high death rates.

Those trusts include:

  • Basildon and Thurrock University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust
  • Medway NHS Foundation Trust
  • North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust
  • Tameside Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Two 'satisfactory' hospitals identified in top risk band

Alder Hey Children's NHS Foundation Trust in Liverpool has been identified as potentially high risk and sits in band 1, despite CQC inspectors working under a previous inspection regime saying the trust was meeting essential NHS standards earlier this year.

Alder Hey Children's NHS Foundation Trust in Liverpool has been identified as potentially high risk. Credit: Phil Noble/PA

Among five risks identified in the new collection of data, three were regarded as "elevated risks" and related to whistleblowing, the quality of data submitted by the trust and staff concerns over managers.

Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs Leeds General Infirmary, also passed essential standards last year and is listed in band 1. Concerns there include whistleblowing, cases of the bug Clostridium difficile and serious concerns over education.

44 NHS trusts found to be at 'highest risk'

A total of 161 acute trusts across England were examined by the CQC against more than 150 indicators.

The screen aims to identify which trusts need the most rapid CQC inspections and where inspectors need to focus their attention.

All 161 trusts were divided into six bands, with band 1 being the highest risk and band 6 the lowest.

There were 44 trusts in the two bands with the highest risk, with 24 trusts in the highest possible band 1.

Quarter of NHS trusts identified as 'high risk'

Almost a quarter of NHS trusts in England have been identified as high risk and may not be offering safe, good-quality care to patients, a new report shows.

Analysis by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) regulator found 44 trusts with the most serious level of concern, including higher than expected death rates across their hospitals.

Almost a quarter of NHS trusts have been identified as high risk, a new report shows. Credit: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

Some trusts were flagged for incidents resulting in harm to patients, while others scored low on staff or patient satisfaction.

Several came to attention due to whistleblowers while others had a higher than expected death rate among patients who should be low risk.

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